The 2017 HSBC UK | National Women’s Road Series reaches its penultimate round on Sunday as riders head to the Newton Longville Festival of Cycling Grand Prix.
With just 19 points separating the top five riders in the series standings, there is everything to play for on the roads of Buckinghamshire.
About the series
The Newton Longville Festival of Cycling Grand Prix is the eighth of nine races in this year’s HSBC UK | National Women’s Road Series, which runs from April until August.
Elizabeth Banks (then of SunSport Velo) got off to the perfect start at the series opener, the Tour of the Wolds, before Wiggle High5’s Grace Garner was victorious at the Essex Giro.
Alice Barnes (Drops) topped the podium at the Lincoln Grand Prix before Team WNT’s Katie Archibald picked up the win at the CiCLE Classic in Melton Mowbray.
The fifth round at the Curlew Cup was won by Julie Erskine of Cycle Team OnForm with the Otley Grand Prix producing a win for Storey Racing’s Jay Harris.
The two-day Tour of the Reservoir saw individual stage wins for Mel Lowther (Team Breeze) and Laura Massey (Drops), with Lowther taking the overall round win.
Following Sunday’s race in Buckinghamshire, the series concludes in North Yorkshire with the Ryedale Women’s Grand Prix on Sunday 6 August.
Riders will be in the saddle for 120km on the roads of Newton Longville, just outside Milton Keynes.
Racing starts and finishes in the village itself, with the course featuring 18 laps of a 6.9km circuit that features just three turns.
What happened last year
Nikki Juniper (Ford Ecoboost) took the victory at the North Bucks Grand Prix in Newton Longville, pipping Drops’ Laura Massey in a tightly-contested bunch sprint finish, with Team Breeze’s Emily Nelson settling for third.
Ones to watch
Series leader Elizabeth Banks will be in action in Buckinghamshire, looking to extend her lead in the standings, which is currently just 10 points.
Banks knows that one of her biggest challenges for the overall series title could come from within her own team, with long-time series leader Chanel Mason well-placed in the top five and just 16 points behind her on 104.
With second-placed Drops’ Laura Massey (110 points) not set to take to the startline, Team Breeze’s Mel Lowther, who currently sits third (105 points) could look to capitalise but will have to do things the hard way.
The Great Britain Cycling Team Senior Academy rider has just two support riders in Buckinghamshire in Abbie Dentus and Becky Raybould, with the usual Team Breeze contingent representing their country in Portugal at the UEC Junior and Under-23 Track European Championships.
Team WNT’s Eileen Roe has had a terrific domestic season and will look to add a HSBC UK | National Women’s Road Series round win to her impressive Tour Series form.
How to follow the racing
- Follow the action from the HSBC UK | National Women’s Road Series on our live blog from 1.45pm on Sunday for race updates, images and social media.
- Follow @BritishCycling on Twitter for updates from both events throughout the racing.
- Video highlights, reports, results, images and reaction will appear on the British Cycling website.